Originally Posted by 1fish2fish
Infusoria is basically bacteria. It is many tiny organisms that grow in plants, etc. You can culture it or you can just add live plants to your spawning tank. To culture infusoria fill a jar with water and add live plants or even hay. Set it in front of a sunny window or a light for a few days and watch as the water begins to get cloudy. *It can take up to a month to get a good culture growing* Re-culture every 2 weeks.
To harvest simply suck some out and add it to the tank. Infusoria is really only good to feed for the first 1-2 weeks.
Very useful article!
In the interest of further education, "infusoria" is not bacteria. Infusoria is protists, which can feed on bacteria. Bacteria are typically ~1Ám (0.001mm), and have no nucleus, while protists are much larger and nucleated. Probably the most relevant protist in "infusoria" is paramecium, which is typically ~200Ám (0.2mm), about twice the thickness of an average human hair. You can see paramecium (barely) with a magnifying glass, while bacteria require a high powered microscope.
The relationship between snails and protists is that snails digest bio waste, and protists can eat snail waste as well as bacteria and algae.
My fry live on "infusoria" from elodea and water sprite in the spawning tank for the first few days of free swimming, at which time I begin bbs, vinegar eels, and micro/banana/walter worms... whatever I have going. To see if you have protists, take a drop of water and put it on a piece of glass. Shine a bright light on it and look through a magnifying glass. You should see very tiny white dots zooming around.
I keep frozen bbs on hand for emergencies, and the slight current from the sponge filter keeps the frozen bbs in suspension long enough that most of the fry will eat it. I have not had terribly good luck with any dry food for the first weeks.